16 dH to 1 dH through a Brita filter - not realistic, right? - Page 3

Water analysis, treatment, and mineral recipes for optimum taste and equipment health.

#21: Post by RobindG »

That's not so bad!

Look at this
On the fence about descaling your espresso machine? See here...

What is the distiller you use?

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#22: Post by homeburrero »

sorenwrang wrote:Just to make sure: Isn't it correct, that the BWT Magnesium cartridge filter is a better option than the Brita, because the BWT filter will soften the water just as well as the Brita filter, but also replace some of the calcium with magnesium instead of hydrogen, thus producing water with pH closer to neutral, compared to the Brita filter?

In other words: Isn't the water from the BWT better for my espresso machine because it's soft and relatively close to neutral pH (thus not building scale OR corroding the tubing etc), compared to the Brita which is also soft but slightly acidic?
Yes, I think those are valid points in favor of BWT over Brita jug filters. But if your water does need softening I think you are best off using something that does softening in a predictable way, and keeping in mind issues related to alkalinity and possibly chloride.

And I neglected to mention yet another option for jug filters that may be on the market soon -- the Peak water filter: https://peak-water.com/ . This one uses a WAC resin filter that reduces both alkalinity and hardness, but supports an adjustable bypass so that you can dial it in to fit your water (and keep some desired hardness and alkalinity.) Pretty new, just out of kickstarter, but may be a reasonable choice for some water.

Many of these filters focus on pourover brewing, where the concern about taste is at the forefront and scale and corrosion are of less importance. Also, when doing cupping tests or pourover brews, the quantity of water relative to extracted coffee is very high, and then bicarbonate alkalinity can make a noticeable difference in muting acids and flavors. In an espresso brew you have far less brew water in the cup, and therefore can tolerate maybe 10x the alkalinity in the water with the same acid buffering effect on the extracted coffee. (See Mixing three waters )
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#23: Post by yakster »

Replaced my ZeroWater filter today due to taste complaints. Did some TDS measurements with the NaCl ppm scale:

Tap: 497
Old Filter: 12
New Filter: 0.7

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#24: Post by DaveB »

Doesn't ZeroWater recommend replacing when it reaches 6?
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#25: Post by homeburrero » replying to DaveB »

Yes, but I've done that - let it go too long without testing and depleted the resins. When I did that the water picked up a noticeable off-odor - sort of fishy.
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#26: Post by sorenwrang (original poster) »

RobindG wrote:It's only the Calcium hardness that dropped, so the water won't scale. Carbonates will still be plenty, so it is not ideal tastewise. And please check your pH!
I just measured the pH of my tap water and the water from my Brita filter pitcher. I used those old school test strips with four colored areas (not the rolled up tear-off paper).

Immediately after taking the strip out of the water, the strips indicated a pH of 7 for my tap water and 6 for my filtered water.
When the strips had dried for a few minutes, the tap water read 8 and the filtered water 7.

In either case I assume that the filtered water is actually within the acceptable boundaries (in terms of risk of corrosion in my espresso machine)?

I think I'll also buy a BWT Magnesium filter and measure the pH of the water it produces and compare this to the water from the Brita filter.


#27: Post by Wattbe »

RobindG wrote:That's not so bad!

Look at this
On the fence about descaling your espresso machine? See here...

What is the distiller you use?
It wasn't too bad but I'd read many posts saying that Volvic was safe and wouldn't create scale so I was somewhat surprised. If I'd used Volvic for 5 years instead of 18 months it may have looked like the boiler in that post!

This is the distiller I use ...

https://www.megahome-distillers.co.uk/3 ... -distiller

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#28: Post by CoffeeCoffeeCoffee »

I was using a Brita filter (store brand but apparently made by Brita). It also would lower GH from 16 to 1 WHEN NEW. However the efficacy deceased rapidly. After filterting about 15 L of hard water, GH of the filtered water is about 7, so that is a huge drop in efficacy (and enough to cause serious scale build-up). You still could filter the water twice to further soften it.

KH decreased as well, but not as drastically as GH.

The amout of H+ ions that go into the water are a concern:
-One filtration, GH about 7, pH about 6
-Two filtrations, GH up to 1, pH about 5 and possibly even lower (the drop tests I used test only between 5-10)
The only criteria that really matters is how much you enjoy your coffee